Nuclear exploration programmes worth Rs 700 cr on: Kakodkar

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Mumbai, May 11 (UNI) Atomic Energy Commission Chairman Dr Anil Kakodkar today said efforts for exploration of uranium were on with drilling and electronic programmes being undertaken at various places in the country, with an investment of nearly Rs 700 crore.

Speaking to mediapersons after the award presentation ceremony on the occasion of National Technology Day, Mr Kakodkar said the exploration work is going on in Karnataka, Rajasthan, Meghalaya, Andhra Pradesh and many other areas of the country.

He said, ''Our target is to reach 10,000 MW nuclear energy by 2020, in the present situation and if we get additional uranium by exploration or through other sources, we should have more energy.'' When asked about more tests, Mr Kakodkar said, ''We had sufficient data after tests conducted in 1998 and if there is any paradigm shift in technology, then its ok.'' He said testing of conventional weapons were different from nuclear weapons, because of advancement in simulation technology.

When asked about the US conducting 1,000 tests and India only six tests, he said it depended on knowledge available at that time.

Former President A P J Abdul Kalam, in a brief interaction, told reporters that India has to become a nuclear power nation and for that we needed to get uranium.

''However, thorium based programme is also there for use,'' Dr Kalam added.

UNI JM SR JT KN1929

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